Kolkata: Current Indian captain Rohit Sharma actively voiced his support for his immediate predecessor Virat Kohli, who is widely perceived to be experiencing a rough patch in international cricket.
Sharma criticised the role of the media in propagating this perception. “If you (media) guys can keep quiet for a while, I think he’ll be alright. We don’t need too much talking from your side, then everything will be taken care of,” he said ahead of India’s first T20I match against the West Indies as part of the three-match series.
Kohli has scored 26 runs in the past three ODIs played against the West Indies earlier this month; this has left his admirers waiting for a return to his heavy-hitting. Though he has notched up occasional half-centuries, Kohli has been unable to score a single century since 2019.
Also read: Rishabh Pant named India vice-captain for West Indies T20 series
Asked about Kohli’s mental state ahead of the first T20I match against the West Indies, Sharma stated, “He is in a great mental space from whatever I see of him. He has been part of this international team for more than a decade. If someone has spent that much time in international cricket, they know how to handle the pressure situations, the environment, and everything.”
“It all starts from you guys. If you guys can keep it quiet for a bit, I think everything will fall into place,” he added.
The three-match India-West Indies T20 series will be played in the Eden Gardens and will commence from February 16.
India won the three-match one-day international series against the Caribbeans 3-0, with both Rohit and Virat getting out cheaply in the final game at Ahmedabad. Rohit got an inside edge while attempting a cover drive and his middle stump flattened, while Virat was caught by Shai Hope after nicking one down the leg-side. Odean Smith further added to India’s top-order batting woes as Shikhar Dhawan departed for 10, before Shreyas Iyer and Rishabh Pant steadied the ship and found some momentum to accelerate.
Indiablooms News Service